Lian Ji, a deputy to the National People’s Congress, Standing Committee member of the CPC Gansu Provincial Committee, and director of the Gansu Provincial Publicity Department, is interviewed by China.org.cn.
Gansu is a cradle of Chinese civilization. Unique historical relics such as the Dadiwan and Majiayao cultural ruins, ancestors of the emperors of the later Zhou, Qin and Tang Dynasties as well as the Hexi Corridor stemming from the rule of Emperor Wu of the Han Dynasty, are all rooted in the province. However, these abundant cultural resources have not yet been explored properly due to the area’s less developed economy and fragile environment.
To ensure the presence of a well-off society in the province by 2020, provincial authorities have now given top priority to the cultural industry, which will significantly promote the leap forward development of the province in an all-round way, stated Lian.
Lian noted that even though Gansu’s cultural industry is not satisfying in terms of scale and level, it will eventually become the pillar industry of the province’s economy. The contribution ratio of the cultural industry to the province’s GDP is expected to rise from its current 1.4 percent to 5 percent by 2020.
Gansu finished its cultural system reform by the end of May 2012. However, some cultural enterprises are less dynamic, less productive and less innovative. The cultural system reform needs to be deepened, said Lian. Cultural enterprises can empower themselves only through participating in the market economy. The establishment of a Chinese Civilization Inheritance & Innovation Zone is a great opportunity for furthering the reforms, advancing the industry’s development and enhancing Gansu’s cultural competitiveness.
Reports state that the cultural zone will cover the Silk Road culture, ancient cultures from southeastern Gansu, the Hexi Corridor culture featuring the Dunhuang culture, and the Lanzhou metropolitan culture centered on the Yellow River.
The establishment of the abovementioned zone will be realized through two phases, said Lian. The first phase, running from 2013 to 2015, will focus on the building of a more resource-intensive, labor intensive, privately owned, export-oriented and high-tech structure of cultural industry. Special efforts will be put into the protection of important cultural relics and the establishment of a public cultural service system.
The targets for the second phase, taking place from 2016 to 2020, are to protect and display most of the cultural relics, create a more sound public cultural service system, set up industrial bases for special cultures, highlight modern cultural innovation in the western areas, and eventually transform the cultural industry into a pillar of economy in the province.
More platforms are required to help Gansu’s culture really “spread out,” said Lian. Tourism festivals and sports events have been held successfully as to promote the province’s culture. The Gansu provincial government has called for each city or prefecture in the province to organize a large scale festival to attract more attention to the overall region. Surely more people will get to know Gansu through investment attraction and promotion at state-level media.
Lian also told China.org.cn that aside from the well-known series “Silk Road” and “Dunhuang My Dreamland,” another dance drama, entitled “Diao Chan,” is being brewed and will be worth the wait. The documentary “Hexi Corridor” will present itself to audiences soon as well.